Last week, I began asking you a series of questions, and I'd like you to thoughtfully consider the questions I'm asking, and send me back an email through the email button at the top of the page with YOUR answers.

You don't have to email back, of course … but please do consider these six issues as you work through growing your Minnesota business — they can catch you off guard sometimes.

And yes, we're headed into our busiest season … so I can't promise that you'll receive a substantive reply from me via email — but I can promise that we'll look at these issues together when we meet, and bring solutions.

While some of these questions involve areas which I and my Minnesota firm do not handle, I will gladly recommend someone who can assist you with those items as needed — and do it well.

So, here are the final 3 (with last week's questions listed as summaries only).

We're in your corner.

My Minnesota Small Business Health Quiz (Part 2)

"The question isn't who is going to let me, it's who is going to stop me.” – Ayn Rand

Even if "business is good" right now, part of our role is to help point out potential potholes along the future path for our Minnesota business-owner clients.

Which is why I'm here to raise some questions for you.

It's a bit of a different approach than I normally take in my Strategy Note, but if you take it seriously … it can be a transformative process.

Take a look at each of these questions, and if you are troubled by any of your answers–give me a call ((763) 493-3940) or send me back an email through the email button at the top of the page …

The Business Advisors' Small Business Health Quiz

From last week…

#1: Is the value of your business firmly established?
[Buy/Sell Agreements]

#2: Is there an emergency plan?
[Will & Asset Protection Strategy]

#3: What happens next?
[Business Succession Plan, and more]

Now to the next questions…

#4: What are your retirement plans?

Questions to consider:

  • Do I know how much income I will actually need at retirement?
  • How much control in the business must I maintain to secure my retirement income?
  • Have I looked into financing options for key employees to buy me out?
  • Do I want to be running my business, full-time, five years from now?
  • Do I have contribution protection for my retirement if I were to become disabled?

Too many business owners view their business as their "retirement cash cow" … but have not made serious plans for how it can BE that cash cow.

#5: Are all of your eggs in one basket?

Questions to consider:

  • Do I have reliable investments, other than my business?
  • Will my business assets account for less than 25% of my retirement plans?
  • In the past year, have I spent more than one hour planning my retirement?

If you haven't diversified your retirement income outside of your business, you could be in trouble.

#6: Is there a REAL tax strategy?

Consider these questions …

  • Am I proactively planning to deal with tax law changes?
  • Have I determined my financial goals — and how taxes will affect them?
  • Will I maximize my tax-free earnings in retirement (and before retirement)?
  • Do I have an exit plan for my business — and is it written down?

Again, all of these issues always seem "procrastinate-able" on the front end … but if you don't have a good answer to more than a couple of the above questions, you might be cruising for a financial bruising.

We will either help you fix these issues ourselves, or put you in touch with someone competent who can help to fix them. Call: (763) 493-3940 or send me an email reply through the email button at the top of the page.

I'm grateful for our chance to serve you and your business — and we are dedicated to its success, in every measure.

Feel free to forward this article to a business associate or client you know who could benefit from our assistance. While these particular articles usually relate to business strategy, as you know, we specialize in tax preparation and planning for families and business owners.

Warmly,

Ron Aho

The Business Advisors

(763) 493-3940